BC visits Minnesota in ACC/Big Ten Challenge

NCAA Basketball

Boston College and Minnesota might have similar maroon and gold colors, but they have been anything but similar in terms of results on the court this season entering their ACC/Big Ten Challenge contest at Minnesota on Tuesday night.

The Minnesota Golden Gophers enter with a lot of confidence after winning their first four games of the season, the latest a 76-67 home victory over North Dakota on Friday.

The Golden Gophers have been led by the top scoring guard in the Big Ten, Marcus Carr, who is averaging 26.5 points a game.

Minnesota also has gotten a lift from Utah transfer Both Gach, who is averaging 15.5 points and 5.8 rebounds a game.

“We just have to be tough and come in right from the start to bring the energy,” Gach said. “As we continue in the season, we are going to have better competition, so by being tough we will need to do the dirty work. We need to play calm, get up on guys defensively and just execute.”

The unbeaten start is especially pleasing to Minnesota coach Richard Pitino, given there wasn’t much of an offseason with the pandemic to acclimate six new players into the team.

“When you have six new bodies, it’s about the continuity and flow offensively,” Pitino said. “It is a work in progress and it’s not where it needs to be by any means.”

Meanwhile, the Boston College Eagles enter with a 1-3 record coming off a 90-70 loss to Florida in the Roman Legends Classic in Connecticut.

The Eagles have been a good offensive team this season, averaging 74.8 points and seeing five players average in double figures through the first four games. Those players are Wynston Tabbs (15.5 points per game.), CJ Felder (11.3), Jay Heath (11.3), Rich Kelly (11.0) and Makai Ashton-Langford (10.0).

The big problem for the Eagles has been stopping opponents. Boston College is allowing 81.8 points per game, which ranks 13th among the 14 ACC teams.

“The off-floor togetherness of our team has got to spread onto the floor,” Boston College coach Jim Christian told the Boston Globe. “The teams that we’re playing, you can’t have lulls.”

–Field Level Media

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